Monthly Archives: March 2016
There’s something about a juicy, grass-fed beef burger that never, ever disappoints. And it’s even better when there’s salty, full-flavored and digestive-aiding miso involved. The flavors here mix very well, and this recipe is so damn quick and easy, you just might find yourself making these quite often.
As someone dealing with the Big C, I’ve often been lectured (mostly by lay people) about beef being a no-no, when actually it is part of my doctor’s orders. “No-no-NO vegetarianism for you!” she always admonishes. It seems my need for nutritious, carefully-sourced red meat just is. My body’s demands for minerals, fats, and other necessary substances are rather high. I have a very fast metabolism and the need for a lot of nutritious food.
Grass-fed beef in particular has health benefits that go beyond the label, and I think a lot of the criticisms I’ve heard about beef are truthful – if it is factory-farmed beef, that is. But organic and/or grass-fed beef is a different animal entirely. Literally. And, most importantly, chemically. It contains a great balance of Omega-3 and -6, CLA (or Conjugated Linoleic Acid, an important fatty acid), is nutrient-dense and is the way nature intended. According to Mercola, CLA bennies are many – including anti-tumor benefits in the case of cancer.
So to those who pan beef (pun certainly intended!), I say this: Try being more aware of where your beef is sourced – and what its actual chemical profile really is – instead of using the too-wide brush to declare all beef as bad. It is not.
Do read Fastfood Nation by Eric Schlosser to get rid of any factory-farmed meat-eating habits that you still practice. It’ll turn your stomach in ways you’ll need to stay aware and healthy, and it’s right up there with Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle.
That said, all you need for these delicious and highly satisfying and nutritious miso beef burgers is beef (get organic and/or grass-fed) and miso (I used Westbrae Natural’s for this recipe because it is organic and has very few ingredients – rice, soy, sea salt, water and koji starter):
- 1 lb ground beef (grass-fed and/or organic is healthiest)
- 1 heaping spoonful of miso
I consider this as a Simple as Hell two-ingredient recipe, yes, but the miso is technically a cheat. I have completely rationalized my cheating as fair – since I didn’t make the miso, I count it as a single item in this two-item recipe 🙂
Start with a small mixing bowl, or even a large cereal bowl will suffice. Place the beef into the bowl, and add a heaping spoonful of miso (and note the spoon I’m using is just a regular flatware spoon):
Next, briefly mix the miso into the beef, but don’t overdo it. I tend to like biting into a burger where there are little pockets of just plain miso. It adds variety, surprise and makes for a much more delicious burger than if you stir the hell out of the miso and beef such that they “become one” – and too much stirring is a surefire way to toughen the beef such that it doesn’t taste as good texture-wise:
After that, quickly and lightly form the miso-beef mix into burgers, your preference as to the size – quarter-pounders, six burgers to a pound of beef…or mini-burgers, whatever you like…
Place your burgers in a hot frying pan on medium to medium-high heat. Important note: I don’t use any cooking spray or third-party grease when cooking burgers or any other cut of beef, with the occasional exception of cow’s milk butter. Burger meat is fatty enough to cook in its own fat – why corrupt it?
When I want browned-on-the-outside, but rare-on-the-inside burgers, I find a medium-high setting to be best. When I want more thoroughly-cooked, but not-so-brown burgers, the lower setting works better. However you like your burgers, find the adjustment that suits you!
Turn the burgers over when you see the outside edges getting brown, usually several minutes, depending upon how high your heat setting and the quirks of your range are. When the burgers are done to your preference, it’s really nice to serve them up on a nice plate for all to admire before digging in!
And damn, these are good! They melt in my mouth, and you can see why below…
Yours in Great Health,